R is for Rambling
Where’s the Beef? Remember that old Burger King commercial…instantly iconic…re-quoted ad nauseam and associated with all manner of abuses. I like to use it when I’m referring to 350-400 page books that you’d need a large quantity of Luminol and a black light to find enough of a plot to justify that many words. In other words…there’s a whole lot of rambling going on!
I understand this is a personal preference…a subjective view of the material. Purple prose (flowery description) is very popular among some readers…I’m just not one of them. But there is a balance to be stricken because a story with no description is just an outline. How much detail does it take for the reader to become immersed in the narrative…and how much are you willing (able) to supply? Have you ever been guilty of consciously adding in extraneous details just to inflate the word count?
I’ve been in the middle of a conversation before and recall thinking to myself – “Now I’m just rambling”. My point was made a long time ago…and for some reason I continued to speak…becoming repetitive and nonsensical at times. I work hard at not doing the same thing with my writing. I can’t count the number of books I’ve read lately where the author repeats a plot point over and over, almost to the point I wonder if the material was targeted to people with ADD. Now I get that the purpose for some of that is because most people don’t read a book in one sitting, so you need to build in little reminders to help them remember what’s going on when they pick the book back up. There’s a point where it becomes tedious though.
I was going to say more, but I think I’ll end it here. I don’t want to be accused of rambling. :)